Capt. Anderson’s Marina is located in Panama City Beach, Florida

 

Shell Island, Dolphins, and Sunsets!

 Shell Island Express Ferry 

STAY FOR AN HOUR OR SPEND THE DAY!  Let one of our large Express Ferries take your family from the Grand Lagoon (don’t forget to check out the nesting osprey’s on the way), through St. Andrew’s Bay over to the dock at legendary Spanish Shanty Cove on Shell Island.  This 7-1/2 mile long, 1/2 mile wide stretch of sand is a barrier island sitting at the mouth of St. Andrew’s Bay.  Written records of early Spanish expeditions reported sightings of “tall” Indians living in lodges thatched with palm trees along many magnificent harbors and deep pockets customary to this area.  The Spanish explorers built several forts and outposts along the Gulf Coast…..one was in a sheltered shallow-water cove on Shell Island, still known as Spanish Shanty Cove.

While on Shell Island you can do everything you normally do at the beach with one big difference – no big buildings behind you!  This section of the island is part of St. Andrew’s State Park and as close to nature as possible with pristine white sand stretching as far as the eye can see!  Sea oats cover the dunes and turtle nest sites are protected.

  • Easiest & Most Convenient way to get to Shell Island
  • Large dockside parking lot at Marina
  • Private dock with SHORTEST walk to Gulf

CRUISE SCHEDULE BEGINS April 1st:

Shuttles leave the Marina beginning at 9:30 am – last trip at 3:30 pm.

Shell Island return trips begin at 11:00 am – last pick up at 5:00 pm.

SCHEDULE BEGINS April 1st

Shell Island EXPRESS FERRY PRICES CLICK TO BOOK A FERRY
ADULT CHILD (2-11) SENIOR MILITARY
$20.00 $10.00 $18.00 $18.00
*Children under 2 years old ride free.
Shell Island EXPRESS FERRY PRICES
ADULT $20.00
CHILD (2-11) $10.00
SENIOR $18.00
MILITARY $18.00
CLICK TO BOOK A FERRY
*Children under 2 years old ride free.

We also offer group (20+) rates!  Please call the ticket office for a quote.


 Dolphin Sightseeing Tours

AHOY MATEY! Come cruise with us on the Capt. Anderson III for family adventures and Dolphin Tours in Panama City Beach you are sure to love!  The Capt. Anderson III has an enclosed and climate controlled lower deck with viewing windows all the way around, complete with a snack bar, restrooms and an open air viewing deck on the bow.  The open upper deck seating area is covered, providing shelter from the elements, while also allowing the perfect place to feel the sea breeze.  There are specially constructed side panels making it safe for the whole family to be right at the edge and not miss a thing.

We are also very proud to introduce the boat’s newest surprise for 2013, a built-in 1000 gallon Sea Life Viewing Well on the main deck of the boat!  We have transformed the glass bottom portion of the main deck to bring you a unique up way to be up close and personal with a variety of local sea creatures.  Don’t be surprised to find a shark or sting ray in there next time you come!

Choose from one of these AWESOME Dolphin Sightseeing trips: 

Shell Island & Dolphin Encounter     1:00 – 4:00 PM

Join us on this 3 HOUR narrated tour where you can relax as you cruise down Historic Grand Lagoon to St. Andrews Bay. The Capt. Anderson III will take you to a private dock located on an uninhabited and pristine portion of Shell Island that is part of St. Andrew’s State Park, and remain there until everybody is back on board one hour later.  Have fun at the beach looking for shells, swimming, and exploring the island,  then it’s back on board to go watch the dolphins play. This trip has been a Shell Island family tradition for over 55 years!

  • See beautiful Shell Island and Bottlenose Dolphins
  • Wading and shell collecting
  • Private dock with a shorter walk to Gulf
  • Restrooms and Snack Bar on board – we stay at the dock
  • Largest and most comfortable island boat-seats for all

Historical narration by the captain

CRUISE SCHEDULE BEGINS March 1st:

March 1 – March 30 (Mon-Sat) / April 1 – October 31 (DAILY)

SHELL ISLAND DOLPHIN TOUR PRICES CLICK TO BOOK A TOUR
ADULT CHILD (2-11) SENIOR MILITARY
$23.00 $12.00 $20.00 $20.00
*Prices include Florida sales tax and State Park fees. Children under 2 years old ride free.
SHELL ISLAND DOLPHIN TOUR PRICES
ADULT $23.00
CHILD (2-11) $12.00
SENIOR $21.00
MILITARY $21.00
CLICK TO BOOK A TOUR
*Prices include Florida sales tax and State Park fees. Children under 2 years old ride free.

We also offer group (20+) rates!  Please call the ticket office for a quote.



PCB Seafari Eco-Tour & Dolphin Encounter   10:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Our newest 2 HR trip is the PC Beach Seafari; an Eco-Adventure Tour for all ages. This is truly a “one-of-a-kind” trip filled with many educational and hands on experiences!

Just imagine the excitement when you watch the crew pull a trawl net aboard to see the rich diversity of marine life and sea shells found in Historic St. Andrews Bay.  Feed the sea gulls and watch the growing family of nesting ospreys.  During the tour, the Captain will provide an educational overview of the native sea life while pointing out historical landmarks of the area.

Don’t forget to bring your camera as St. Andrew’s Bay is home to a large population of Bottlenose Dolphins.  An encounter with these beautiful, intelligent creatures is very common in the bay and the Gulf of Mexico, and all passengers will be lively engaged in the “Dolphin Watch” and subsequent viewing on this trip.

  • ECO-TOUR CRUISES scheduled for TUESDAYS – THURSDAYS & SATURDAYS only

SEAFARI DOLPHIN TOUR PRICES CLICK TO BOOK A TOUR
ADULT CHILD (2-11) SENIOR MILITARY
$20.00 $10.00 $18.00 $18.00
*Children under 2 years old ride free.
SEAFARI DOLPHIN TOUR PRICES
ADULT $20.00
CHILD (2-11) $10.00
SENIOR $18.00
MILITARY $18.00
CLICK TO BOOK A TOUR
*Children under 2 years old ride free.

 We also offer group (20+) rates!  Please call the ticket office for a quote.


 

Sunset Dolphin Encounter

Make friends while cruising along the gulf…

Our sunset cruise departs every evening to cruise out to the edge of the Gulf and watch the dolphins play. St. Andrew’s Bay is home to a large population of Bottlenose Dolphins.  An encounter with these beautiful, intelligent creatures is very common in the bay and the Gulf of Mexico, and all passengers will be lively engaged in the “Dolphin Watch” and subsequent viewing on this trip.

As Capt. Ford used to say, “Come on out and get a little salt in your sniffer”!  Being out on the water and watching these graceful wild animals in their natural habitat is one of the most enjoyable trips you will experience here in beautiful Panama City Beach!

Be sure to bring your camera!

SUNSET CRUISE SCHEDULE BEGINS April 1st:

APRIL      5:30 – 7:00

MAY, JUNE, JULY, AUGUST       6:00 – 7:30

SEPTEMBER      5:30 – 7:00

OCTOBER      5:00 – 6:30

EVENING DOLPHIN ENCOUNTER TOUR PRICES CLICK TO BOOK A TOUR
ADULT CHILD (2-11) SENIOR MILITARY
$15.00 $8.00 $13.00 $13.00
*Prices include Florida sales tax. Children under 2 years old ride free.
EVENING DOLPHIN ENCOUNTER TOUR PRICES
ADULT $15.00
CHILD (2-11) $8.00
SENIOR $13.00
MILITARY $13.00
CLICK TO BOOK A TOUR
*Prices include Florida sales tax. Children under 2 years old ride free.

We also offer group (20+) rates!  Please call the ticket office for a quote.

*NEW*

~ SUMMER CONCERT SERIES ~

“PRAISE ON THE BAY – Sunset Cruise w/Dolphin Encounter”

1st & 3rd Thursdays – SUMMER 2014

*Click here for more information*

  • Capt. Anderson’s Marina

    5550 N. Lagoon Dr. Panama City Beach, Florida, 32408

    800-874-2415 ~ 850-234-3435

The ticket office is open EVERY DAY, 7 DAYS A WEEK during the summer;

and MON – FRI during off season.   

 Click for Directions

Shell Island Tours and Dolphin Tours

Do I need to make a reservation? Do I pay now or when I arrive?

Yes. We ask that you make reservations in advance to ensure correct number of deckhands on board for the number of our visitors. You CAN pay in advance if you wish; however, it is not required.

Can I bring food?

Yes, but you don’t need to.  There is a cash galley on the boat that you can buy snacks and drinks.

Is lunch served on board?  Do we need to bring cash for food/drinks?

The Capt. Anderson III has a snack bar on board serving all the major junk food groups (:-) including Hot Dogs, Chips, Sodas, Ice Cream, Slushies, Candy Bars, Etc. all at "Family Friendly Pricing" (ex; $2 for Hot Dog) There's no WiFi on board to run a credit card, so you will need to bring cash.

Do we need to bring anything for the Seafari?

It is not necessary to bring anything except your personal items and a camera!  If you WANT to bring your own snacks, drinks, etc, it is OK to bring in a bag or backpack.  (No coolers or alcohol allowed on board)

Does the boat stop at Shell Island for a while?

During the morning Seafari trip, you will stay on the boat the entire time and will travel through St. Andrew's Bay behind Shell Island (when we drag the trawl net), then go up through "The Pass" to the front of Shell Island and in front of St. Andrews State Park (during the Dolphin Encounter).  The same boat does a 3 HR tour from 2:00 - 5:00 which includes a 1 HR stop at the island.

Is this the same boat as the Glass Bottom Boat?

YES!  We have transformed the glass bottom portion on the main deck into a built-in 1,000 gallon Sea Life Viewing Well.  You will be able to see a variety of local sea creatures up close.

Do you really see dolphins?  What if we don’t see them?

St. Andrew’s Bay is home to a large population of Bottlenose Dolphins.  We see them just about every day, but as they are wild animals that live in the Bay we cannot promise you will see them.  However, since our captains go out several times a day, they know where the dolphins like to play and will make every attempt to encounter them so you can see these beautiful, intelligent creatures in their natural environment.

Can I feed/swim with the dolphins?

No, it is illegal to swim with wild dolphins in the state of Florida. There are other companies promoting that they do swim with dolphins which is why there is a legal presence out on the water now to prevent this. The dolphins in St. Andrew’s Bay are wild; therefore, we advocate good stewardship by practicing safe viewing which will not disrupt the animals behavior, but allow them to be seen in their natural environment.

Gulf World is the only place in Panama City you can legally touch the TAME/trained dolphins.

Can I really touch the Sea Creatures?  How do we pass them around?

We have special see thru buckets that each creature will be carefully placed into and passed around so everybody will get a chance to look at up close.  We will allow guests to touch any animal that is not dangerous; such as sea urchins, jellyfish (yes-the NON poisonous variety), flatfish such as flounder, puffer fish, cow fish, horseshoe crabs, etc.

What if I get my hands messy?

The crew is prepared with disinfectant and a bucket to rinse hands in.  There are also bathrooms on board the boat for washing with soap and water.

What is the size of boat?

This is a very large double deck boat, licensed to hold up to 250 passengers.  The lower deck is enclosed and air conditioned with a cash galley and restrooms.  The upper deck is open air and covered.

What if it is raining?

Our trips go rain or shine but not when lightening is present.  Actually, the dolphins usually tend to gather in the Bay (where they live) when it is unfavorable weather conditions in the Gulf.

Can I bring drinks/cooler?

Because of fishing regulations, our public charter boats prohibit coolers of any kind brought on board.  Unfortunately, this applies to CAIII also.  The 3 things not allowed are:  alcohol, GPS or a cooler (unless medical need).  Visitors are encouraged to bring a beach bag w/snacks, towels, snorkel gear, etc.

Are there bathrooms on the Captain Anderson III?

YES! There are 2 bathrooms on the boat.  During the Shell Island cruise, the boat stays docked at the Island in order for our visitors to have access to these restrooms

What should I bring with me?

Bring a towel, sun block, sunglasses, camera and whatever else you feel essential.

Are there any Snorkel opportunities?

As of right now we do not provide any of the snorkel gear, but you may bring your own snorkel gear or purchase some from Dockside Gift Shop here at the Marina.

What if I get sick on the boat?

This trip is a very smooth ride and we very rarely have anyone get sick.  If you are nervous about sea sickness, we advise you to take a “non-drowsy” form of Dramamine before your trip.

Do you sell seasick pills on your boat?

We sell the seasick pills in our gift shop which is conveniently located next door to our ticket office.

Where is Shell Island and can I get there by car?

This 7-1/2 mile (east to west) long, 1/2 mile wide stretch of sand, is a barrier island sitting at the mouth of St. Andrew's Bay and only accessible by boat.  It is as close to nature as possible with pristine white sand stretching as far as the eye can see!  Sea oats cover the dunes and turtle nest sites are protected.  The point where we dock up is approximately 3 miles towards the center and still within the boundaries of the State Park.  Don’t worry; we pay the park fee for you to be there!  This portion of the island known as “Spanish Shanty” is uninhabited and pristine clean.  We like to say “It’s like God made it, Nature would like to keep it, and we’re going to help!”

What else is there to do at Shell Island?

While on Shell Island you can do everything you normally do at the beach with one big difference - no big buildings behind you!  It is very much like having a private and very beautiful island that is not a public beach!  There are many things to do such as; swimming, shelling, snorkeling, sun bathing and even taking a nice hike through the paths on the dunes!  Enjoy the exploration, but please remember to respect the area and “leave no trace” behind.  We have bathrooms and trash cans on the CAIII for this purpose.

What is Spanish Shanty?

Written records of early Spanish expeditions reported sightings of "tall" Indians living in lodges thatched with palm trees along many magnificent harbors and deep pockets customary to this area.  The Spanish explorers built several forts and outposts along the Gulf Coast.....one was in a sheltered shallow-water cove on Shell Island, still known as Spanish Shanty Cove.

Are there shells on Shell Island?  Can I take them home?

The quantity & size of shells you find depends on the time of year and the tide.  We recommend wading about knee deep into the water and you can usually find some there. You may take home any shell as long as nothing is living in it. Visitors that are on our Seafari will be able to take home pin shells, whelks, and other empty shells from the bay that were found in the trawl net.

Are there bathrooms on Shell Island?

No; the island is basically just an uninhabited beach. The CAIII stays on the island while you are there if you need to get back on to use the restrooms or if you’d like to purchase anything from the snack bar, or just get back into the air conditioning.

Do you offer group rates?

YES! We offer group (20+) rates, school rates, military rates & senior discounts (over 55 yrs)! Please call the ticket office for a quote.

Can we come back multiple times?

YES!  Please come back as many times as you’d like!  We love our returning customers!  During certain times you can even use your ticket stub from one trip to get a discount on another so don’t forget to ask!

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